Wednesday’s Wingding

All the news that's fit to rant aboutRally round the news, boys.
Jacques Garnerin makes the first parachute jump from a balloon in 1797. That’s brave. Ferdinand Porsche conceived the Volkswagen on this day in 1934. Hitler called it the “strength through joy” car. Not exactly Fährfugnugen. The first commercial air service from Hawaii to the mainland was inaugurated on this day in 1936, to my knowledge no one jumped out.

  1. Ballmer tells ITXpo that Windows is more secure than Linux. “In the first 150 days after the release of Windows 2000, there were 17 critical vulnerabilities. For Windows Server 2003 there were four. For Red Hat 6, they were five to ten times higher.”
  2. A Maryland middle school boy is rousted by the FBI for email questions to the Maryland Transportation Authority about the Chesapeake Bay Bridge. “In today’s environment,” says Baltimore FBI spokesman Barry Maddox, “we take all leads very seriously. We had to make sure this was a legitimate school project. The kinds of questions he was asking about the bridge, we have to have a sense of caution.”
  3. End of line. Apple sneaks the G4 into the iBook, eliminating the G3 from its entire line.
  4. According to Slashdot, AT&T corporate is planning to block all incoming email unless you’re on their whitelist. This must be the most extreme response to spam problems ever attempted by a corporation.
  5. California cell phone activists filed two law suits yesterday. The first accuses Nextel of dropping itemized billing then sending all California customers four text messages at 15¢ a pop. “They’re nickeling and diming consumers out of what could amount to hundreds of thousands of dollars in overcharges and they’re making it impossible for people to discover they’ve been ripped off,” said Harvey Rosenfield, president of The Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights. The group also filed suit against Cingular for providing inadequate service for new customers.
  6. Amazon made money last quarter! Its first non-holiday quarter profit.

14 Replies to “Wednesday’s Wingding”

  1. Ballmer’s balmy. He’s comparing oranges to pomegranates. If he wants to do a real comparison, it should be Linux and all its apps to Windows and ALL ITS APPS – including Office, Outlook, etc.
    Or he could compare his O/S against the Linux kernel. Whatever’s fairer. 😉
    Mike

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  2. What terrorist would be stupid enough to email the Maryland Transportation Authority trying to get info? Where’s the “Terrorism for Dummies” manual when you need it? Jeezus.

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  3. I worked for a telesales department for Nextel this past summer before returning to school. Needless to say, I have a number of gripes about how they run things there. Not really a great company, but it WAS a fantastic job!

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  4. We use both Windows and Linux system in our offices and what Ballmer said was true, we have had a lot more upgrades on our Linux systems then we have had on our Windows systems. It is also true that our Linux servers were hacked while the hackers could only do a Denial of Service (DoS) attack on our Windows servers.
    The real problem is not the number of security fixes on what ever platform you are using Windows, Linux, or even Mac. The problem is that people don’t install the upgrades, and on a modern operating system it can’t be much easier. I hate to say it but, maybe we need to be forced to install the upgrades!
    The other big problem is how the media (excluding TECHTV) reports security problems. Most of the time, the reporters don’t have any knowledge on computers, this just leads to misinformation and fear in the minds computer users.
    Even the media that has computer knowledge only reports on Windows security problems and not holes found in non-Microsoft systems for example the hole in “OpenSSL (Secure Socket Layer)” that affects many platforms including Linux and Mac OS X.
    One last problem I see is with lawmakers and the courts. Like the general media they don’t understand computers. We need laws that really protect us from the Crackers who take advantage of the security holes and the people who write the viruses. No more fines, they need to spend time in jail.

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  5. ken..maybe what you’re saying is true, but…all I know is…that my Linux system has NEVER crashed at all, while my windows system, no maybe which version, crashes, or something screws up with it , all the time.

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  6. Thom,
    “not buying it”. Thom I have done the upgrades and we have had more upgrades on our Linux systems, but we are still using Linux. The point of my post was that all systems have bugs and users are not installing the upgrades. I don’t know if it is that people just don’t want to make the time to install the upgrades or that users are mislead by press who don’t know what they are talking about, but something has to be done.
    The question I have is “Should updates (bug fixes) be forced?”.
    -Ken

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  7. > hom I have done the upgrades and we have had more
    > upgrades on our Linux systems,
    I still don’t see how. I too use Windows and Linux ( and OpenBSD ) in the office, and I’ve had FAR MORE patches for Windows show up than Slackware – by orders of magnitude.
    > The question I have is “Should updates (bug fixes) be forced?”.
    Probably not.
    First off, lets look at Apples latest upgrade called “Panther.” Should anyone be force to pay $130 to apply the Panther update in order to receive security fixes (if any) included in the product?
    Second, lets look at Microsoft for a bit. You might remember around W2K SP2 they decided to change the licensing agreement that came along with their security patches. There was some discussion on Groklaw about how the new licensing might be in violation of HIPAA regulations. Shoult IT admins be forced to install security fixes that make them federal criminals?
    Both of these are extreme cases, but real none-the-less, and potent enough for me to think that required patching shouldn’t be required.

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  8. Thom:
    Maybe I have more installed on our linux servers then you do and that is why I have had more upgrades then you have. We keep a log of all upgrades and the log for our RedHat Linux 9.0 servers have had more upgrades, then our Windows XP systems. I am installing Windows 2003 Web Edition on our Windows servers next week I kind of wonder how many upgrades I will have the first day?
    I think if upgrades were forced the companies would require a YES/NO on any upgrades that would change the licensing agreement.
    I agree with you that Apple’s upgrade scam is a problem and to think the tech media attacked Microsoft for thinking about charging a yearly fee for upgrades and Apple is basically doing the same thing.
    I need to end with saying “I love Apple, I love Apple, they’re a wonderful company”. Ok, my non-profit company just requested some Macs to using in our testing labs and you never know who reads this.

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  9. hi leo, interesting about the XP prob – why dont they just compare windows 3.11 and say it had less security violations that linux did – thats a fair comparison (sic)!!
    they must have had some chuckles about that statement of lies!! blugghhh

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